Of gods, diamonds and brothels – quarrying questions

Hugh Farmer: Researching my recent Quarrying in Hong Hong  article brought up lots of place names with  quarrying associations. And even more questions. Can you help answer any? A Kung Ngam Quarry:  “A Kung literally means maternal grandfather or old man in Cantonese while Ngam means rock, but in the case of this place name, “A Kung” refers to Tam Kung, sea god, who the […]

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Quarrying in Hong Kong – how the City of Victoria was built

Hugh Farmer: Stone is the only commodity in which Hong Kong is still self-sufficient, and quarrying was a major early industry. The granite extracted from the quarries in East Kowloon, Stonecutter’s Island, Quarry Bay and from the Kowloon hills were used throughout the territory and shipped to Canton for building purposes. The Roman Catholic Cathedral in Guangzhou was constructed in the […]

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1957 Trade Fair TST – Chinese company names translated and indexed

Hugh Farmer: This article is a joint effort of Thomas Ngan, IDJ, Neil Morris and myself. Thomas has done a fantastic job in first translating the Chinese company names and products. And secondly by inserting arrows into the two photos below to link the advertising signs to the index. A lot of work Thomas, thanks very much. * The first […]

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Holts Wharf and Godown

Hugh Farmer: Holts Wharf (藍煙囪貨倉碼頭) was a  godown terminal in Tsim Sha Tsui. In 1905 a decision was made to purchase land in Kowloon for the construction of wharves and warehouses so that dedicated and independent facilities were available for the Blue Funnel fleet, part of Alfred Holt & Company. The wharf opened in 1910 and was jointly owned by […]

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Ancient Stone Trails, Stone bridges and Waymarkers in HK

Thomas Ngan: Before Shek Pik Reservoir and the South Lantau Road were built, villagers travelled either by boat, or by ancient footpaths between major villages on Lantau. You might have heard a few months some villagers of a few villages in the Tung Chun area blocked the foot path going through their villages. It was around the same month of the […]

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The “Canton System” – background and meaning of the term

This post follows from Queries & Answers 12 “The term Compradore.” James Chan has read that the comprador system originally came to prominence after the Canton system, in the late Ming dynasty, was abolished in 1842 and the compradores replaced the “hong” merchants as the main intermediaries between Chinese and Western traders. He is mystified. James wonders if anyone can explain the terms,  Canton system, and hong merchant. And […]

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Resources – updated, great new ways to discover HK’s Industrial History.

Hugh Farmer: Last updated 20th Feb 2014 I’ve added new places to go to research HK’s industrial past. Thanks to those of you who have added to the list. The latest is Andrew Wood who provides an Australian website http://catalogue.nla.gov.au/and laments that there are far more HK historic maps there than in HK official sources. If you’re British, and forgetting industrial […]

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